ATP Blog 38
Will of God
Do you know the will of God? Specifically, do you know God’s will for you? Those are questions that are contested and discussed by many people who call themselves Christians. Jesus Christ was asked that question in today’s verses. “Then they said to Him, ‘What shall we do that we may work the works of God?’” (verse 28)
God Before examining the answer to the question, let us ensure we are clear on all the details. The first detail we must be clear on is who this ‘God’ is. The audience of John’s gospel is mainly people of the nation of Israel, so the assumption is that they know the God described in the Old Testament, starting in Genesis as the Creator of the World, and the founder of the nation of Israel through Abraham. One thing that the Jews forgot, was that God loves the entire world, and meant for His special people to demonstrate that love to the world, rather than keep Him to themselves.
Works The second detail is the assumption that the Jews made, that God desired them to do certain and specific works. Like many religions, Judaism had morphed into a set of rules based on appeasing God through the things they did. Jesus had described (chapter five) doing the works of God, and that through the power of the Holy Spirit, His followers would also do these amazing deeds of mercy.
They A third detail is the description of the crowd asking the question. They are not only Jews, but had just witnessed the feeding of the 5000+, and followed Jesus across the lake. After trying to make Jesus into a political leader, they tried asking for more signs to help understand who He claimed to be. The teachers of the day had taught a powerful, political Messiah who would save them from the Romans, but God had a much bigger plan. So, their question really was, ‘What works does God want us to do, if what we have been doing is wrong?’
Truth Jesus’ answer was both simple, and unexpected. “Jesus answered and said to them, ‘This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He sent.’” So, the truth comes out: if you want to please God, there is only one way to do it, and that is to believe in Jesus Christ, the One whom He sent. Previously, Jesus Christ made it very clear that God had sent Him to be the Messiah predicted in the Old Testament, and was trying to help them understand His purpose as Immanuel, God with us.
Believe We have this idea that to believe involves just the mind and reason, but the Bible teaches a very different story. To believe … to truly believe … must be more than just knowledge, but must move to the heart, and affect the entire person. It affects your attitudes, emotions, decisions, reasoning, passions, desires … every part of you! If you believe a person, then you must trust them. If you believe God, you must believe everything that He says; you cannot pick and choose based on what you like, or is convenient. This leads to faith, trusting in what He will do, according to His promises.
God’s Will Putting this all together then, God’s will is for you to believe everything about Jesus Christ … who He is, and what He teaches. Why? The answer is very simple. This was God’s plan since the very beginning. The entire Bible points to Jesus Christ as the answer to the most basic problem: our sin. Salvation comes through Jesus Christ alone. So then, it comes to this conclusion: God desires for you to be saved! God’s will is for you to find salvation, which comes through Jesus Christ alone.
Have you discovered God’s will for you?